Blog > Field service
Blog > Field service
3 April 2019 | 5 min read
For several weeks, fuel prices have been breaking records. Faced with the amount of time technicians spend on the road, which often represents half of their working day, and with no hope of lower prices in the near future, the operations managers are looking for solutions to optimise the routes of their mobile workers, and thus reduce their consumption.
Thankfully, artificial intelligence is now making it possible to develop tools that are particularly interesting for optimising the planning of maintenance or repair operations, while meeting the expectations of customers and field workers. Here are 5 reasons to adopt a route scheduling and optimisation software to manage your business and your technicians.
There are many settings that operations managers must take into account when planning maintenance routes:
Determining the best routes by integrating all these factors is a real headache! Scheduling these routes by hand, or even using tools such as Google Maps or Excel, is not an efficient way to manage your business: wasted time, missed appointments, delays, upset customers, exhausted technicians, etc.
Good news: maintenance route optimisation software has been designed to manage these constraints. In concrete terms, thanks to algorithms and artificial intelligence, the route optimisation tool assigns maintenance operations to technicians in a few seconds according to the time and business constraints defined by the scheduler.
“The best waste is the waste we don’t produce”. For several years, the zero waste movement, which aims to reduce the waste of resources, has become more and more important in every aspect of our daily lives. The home service sector is no exception…
The route optimisation software is also based on the idea that the best mileage is the one that is not travelled. The objective of these tools is therefore to assign maintenance or repair operations according to business constraints, while minimising the kilometres travelled between two maintenance steps. For this purpose, route optimization software offers several features:
The use of a route optimization solution is also interesting for your customers, as the tool is available 24/7. In general, customers want to contact your customer service department to schedule an appointment during their free time, i.e. outside your opening hours. To meet this issue, some publishers offer online appointment scheduling systems. Let’s take the example of vientchezvous.com, the tool offered by AntsRoute:
The unexpected absence of a customer during an appointment wastes considerable energy and money for service professionals: unnecessary kilometres travelled, frustrated technicians, equipment stored until the next visit, etc. To reduce the number of missed appointments, route optimisation software offers several solutions:
For most technicians, writing service reports is a time-consuming and tedious task. However, these reports are particularly appreciated by customers and facilitate the billing process. The use of a route optimization tool allows the automation of this service report. Thanks to the mobile application provided to the technicians, the field data is transferred automatically to the operations manager. In a few seconds, you can edit a report template in AntsRoute.
The manager could include the following data in the service report template:
In just a few clicks, the information gathered by the field technician can be transformed into a PDF document. In addition, the AntsRoute route optimisation tool makes it possible to include a link to download this service report within a notification sent to the customer by text message or email after the visit of the technician.
Do you want to try our maintenance route planning and optimisation tool in practice? Go to this page to get a free 7-day trial with no commitment!